What workers want

Workplace design is evolving, with designers considering the latest dimension of employee wellbeing along with accommodating remote and flexible hours and the well-established agile working principles.

But the question remains; what do workers actually want from their place of work and how can you find a balance between corporate employer values and the individual employee wishes?

The new London offices for hyper growth company Airbnb, revealed at Clerkenwell Design Week, continue their focus on the office locality which is the businesses core proposition rather than the global nature of the company itself. A gathering ‘green’ area links all offices with a Knoll in USA, a Hill in Dublin and in London the Village Green located next to the Farmhouse Kitchen. Rather than replicate exact listed apartments as in California they encourage staff to personalise the space themselves in the same style which in turn creates pride and a level of care in their environment. Aaron Taylor Harvey from the Airbnb Environments Team believes if people are excited and happy they are also naturally more productive benefitting both parties.

Back in 2007 we provided a range of personalisation options for the staff at the then government body Learning and Skills Council from their own favourite image of their local area to a choice of colour palettes for the reception and coffee bar. Focused on implementing remote and agile working our kit of parts system for the project resulted in a decrease of operating costs by 33%.

In our own offices this year a requirement to remove under used store rooms and create a larger working floor space provided an opportunity for integrated services and bespoke storage walls and shelving. Allowing us to clear the typical office clutter and create highlighted display for more project and personal staff items. Aside from the brightness of colour and space teams have now displayed project related references, mock up samples, programmes from matches and framed photographs of their winning photographs from our monthly desktop screen competition. This has immediately sparked conversation and the sharing of ideas in new ways.

With the BCO and Savills findings announced tomorrow from their survey of 1100 office workers across the country asking ‘What do workers want from their office workspace?’ we are sure this is an everlasting discussion topic not only in our office.

Our current inspiration:

Instagram – Office porn www.instagram.com/officeporn

Kontor – www.kontor.com

Well certificate – www.wellcertified.com

BCO – www.bco.org.uk

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